Adult Novice Groups

Richmond Canoe Club is a flat-water racing kayaking and canoeing club. We train 52 weeks of the year, in all weathers, and there are races of some description at least once every month through the year.

All paddlers are expected and encouraged to race regularly. Marathon races take place in 9 divisions, ranging from beginner-level to international standard, so every paddler can find an appropriate level of competition. Taking part in races is not only great fun, but essential for paddlers if they are to improve boat skills.

Regular paddling at Richmond takes the form of participation in training groups (all year round, for adult novices and improvers primarily on Saturday afternoons and Tuesday evenings, and on other days too as you improve) and the regular Club time trials (10k on Wednesday evenings April to September.) Kayak racing not only requires skill and technique, but also good all-round fitness. In order to advance through the racing divisions we encourage paddlers to expand their training to include running, core-strengthening gym exercises and kayak ergo.

Previous experience and high levels of fitness are not required when novices join Richmond Canoe Club.  Enthusiasm and commitment to paddling, and to the club, conquers all. To progress in racing you should plan to commit to at least two sessions a week of paddling, plus land-based training.

We all know that life can be demanding, being stretched in different directions, but if you are willing to commit regular time to Richmond Canoe Club, we will help you improve your fitness and strength, teach you the art of kayaking, incorporate you into the wonderful social side of RCC and take you to some of the most rewarding and exhilarating events of you life – sprint and marathon kayak races!

To start paddling and racing at Richmond Canoe Club

We run Adult Introduction to Racing Courses between April and October. Each course comprises four on-the-water sessions and two indoor technique sessions on the paddle machines. The sessions are usually on Saturday afternoons and Tuesday evenings but each course may vary slightly. The course provides an introduction to the sport of racing kayaking and to Richmond Canoe Club. It’s suitable for complete beginners and those who’ve had some paddling experience in other types of kayak (eg white water). The course costs £75 and more details can be found if you click on Introduction to Racing Kayaking Course.
Our next course starts on Saturday 28th August. See full dates below. Booking will open on Thursday 19th August and you will need to click here to book. Booking for all of our courses is on a first-come-first-served basis.
The dates for this course are:

Thursday 26th August, 7 – 8.30pm, land-based technique session

Saturday 28th August, 2 – 4pm, water session

Sunday 29th August, 2 – 4pm, water session

Monday 30th August, 2 – 4pm, water session

Tuesday 1st September, 7 – 8.30pm, land-based technique session

Saturday 4th September, 2 – 4pm, water session


If you would like to be added to our mailing list to be alerted when the dates of future 2021 courses are published, please email lovekayaking@googlemail.com. If you have e-mailed already in the hopes of joining one of our courses this year we will be contacting you  as soon as we have course dates fixed.
You can also come down to the canoe club and chat to our coaches and current novices to get a better idea of whether the sport, and Richmond Canoe Club, is right for you. The best time to do this is usually a Saturday afternoon at about 4.30pm. You’re welcome to come down to the club at other times of the week, but we can’t guarantee that there’ll be a coach to talk to.

The course is an introduction to racing kayaking. If you are more interested in recreational paddling, or in specific disciplines such as white water or sea kayaking, we suggest you look on the Canoe England website www.canoe-england.org.uk/ findaclub.aspx, where you can find details of other clubs in the area that focus on different aspects of the sport.